Warning: This article discusses suicide and sexual assault. It also mentions some spoilers.
Not every show deserves a second season of television – because they are either so bad they should have been cancelled midway through season one or because the story is so brilliant, there is simply no need to stretch it out. 13 Reasons Why is a Netflix Original series based on Jay Asher’s novel of the same name.
It follows the life and death of 17-year-old Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford), who, before she commits suicide, records 13 tapes explaining each of the reasons why she chose to end her life – from being bullied, to being sexually assaulted and feeling as though she is completely isolated.
Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette) receives the tapes and makes it his duty to get some justice for Hannah. He wants to make people realise that being shitty to someone just because you can be is not an option. The series ends with Clay, whilst not being totally at peace with Hannah’s decision, starting to make the steps to move on.
The story over of 13 Reasons Why over, right?
Well, maybe not. A few things were left unanswered at the end of the series, like did Alex (Miles Heizer) survive his own suicide attempt? Will Jessica (Alisha Boe) do what Hannah was never able to and press charges against Bryce (Justin Prentice)? Will Sheri (Ajiona Alexus) go to prison for her actions? What will Hannah’s parents do with the tapes? Will Clay ever be at peace?
The story of Hannah Baker is over, but what about the story of those she left behind?
Jay Asher, author of the story, said to EW, “I’d just like a continuation of all those characters. I’m curious as well. What happens to Clay? How do people react to what Alex did at the very end? What’s going to happen to Mr. Porter? I’d thought of a sequel at some point. I’d brainstormed it, but decided I wasn’t going to write it. So I’d love to see it.”
He continues on to explain that, “Things weren’t left open in the hopes of a sequel… There is no end for the characters left behind… Every action we have is going to have repercussions in ways we could not anticipate. You realize that with not just what Hannah did, but also how other people treated Tyler throughout it. It’s the whole message of the book. Of course, there’s obviously ways to go with a second season if they do that.”
13 Reasons Why is easily the year’s best show in television. It tackles heavy topics most shows don’t want to touch, and it provides an honest and real representation of suicide. It is not pretty – it is ugly and completely heartbreaking.
But, just because a show can continue doesn’t mean that it should. We guess we shall just have to wait and see.
You can check out 13 Reasons Why on Netflix.
If you or someone you know are experiencing thoughts or feelings of suicide, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue at 1300 22 463. There is no shame in seeking help.